Property Management

The autumn checklist: getting your chalet guest-ready

As the vibrant colours of summer fade away, the French Alps prepare to transform into a winter wonderland. For owners of self-catered chalets in this region, the autumn season presents a golden opportunity to ensure your rental property is primed for the upcoming influx of winter holidaymakers.

This comprehensive autumn checklist is designed to guide you through essential property management tasks that will not only enhance the guest experience but also contribute to the long-term success of your real estate investment…

Autumn chalet preparations

Exterior maintenance and curb appeal

Maintaining your rental chalet’s exterior is paramount as it sets the initial impression for your guests upon arrival. It serves as their first glimpse into the quality and care you’ve invested in your property.

Here are the key tasks to make sure you cover:

  • Rake and clear fallen leaves from the property grounds;
  • Inspect and clean gutters to prevent water damage;
  • Trim overgrown vegetation and trees for safety and aesthetics;
  • Re-paint facades;
  • Check outdoor lighting and replace bulbs as needed.
Chalet Riparian in the snow
The exterior of Chalet Riparian, La Clusaz is clean, clear and well-maintained, making it a strong selling point

Interior comfort and amenities

Ensuring the interior of your rental chalet is meticulously prepared for winter guests is essential for creating a cosy and memorable stay. Well-maintained heating systems, properly insulated windows, and thoughtfully arranged furnishings contribute to a warm and inviting atmosphere.

Make sure to tick the following tasks off your list before welcoming winter guests:

  • Organise a deep clean of your property, declutter and re-organise;
  • Ensure heating systems are functioning efficiently and have been serviced;
  • Organise an inspection of the fireplace and a chimney sweep if needed;
  • Examine windows and doors for drafts and replace weatherstripping if necessary;
  • Test and replace the batteries in smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms;
  • Provide cosy blankets, warm lighting, and autumn-themed decor for a welcoming ambience.
Dining room at Chalet Stellaone
The dining room at Chalet Stellaone, La Clusaz exudes a wintry charm

Maximising return on investment

Autumn is the perfect time to schedule larger projects, which may help enhance your property’s booking or resale value. Make sure to plan in advance, purchasing materials and arranging services well beforehand.

Upgrades and renovations

  • Evaluate potential upgrades to enhance the guest experience (e.g. modern appliances and smart home features);
  • Plan renovations for the off-season, focusing on high-impact areas such as living/dining rooms, and wellness areas, etc);
  • Research eco-friendly improvements to attract environmentally-conscious renters such as switching to energy-saving light bulbs and installing pressure-reducing valves on taps.
Chalet Le Mousqueton’s garage renovation is the perfect example of how to transform unused space into a profitable asset

Financial and administrative tasks

Along with the physical management of your property, there are also a few admin tasks that can be tackled in the off-season. Remember to put some time aside to get on top of these whilst it’s quiet, so you don’t get caught out with lengthy procedures in the height of the winter season.

A man points at graphs on a piece of paper with a pencil
Take the time to review your finances and plan for the upcoming season – photo by Scott Graham

Budget review and expense planning

  • Review your annual budget and assess the financial performance of your rental property;
  • Allocate funds for property maintenance, upgrades, and marketing efforts.

Guest experience and communication

  • Develop a personalised welcome package with local recommendations and autumn activities;
  • Fine-tune communication channels to promptly address guest enquiries and concerns;
  • Gather feedback from previous guests to identify areas for improvement.

The autumn season in the French Alps presents an opportune moment for chalet owners to ensure their properties are meticulously prepared for the upcoming winter season. By diligently following this autumn checklist, you’ll not only elevate the guest experience but also safeguard your real estate investment.

With attention to detail, strategic planning, and a commitment to enhancing your property, you’ll create unforgettable memories for your guests while optimising the potential for rental success.

If you need more help or advice about running a rental chalet in the French Alps, then contact OVO Network. Our team of experts provide dedicated owner support in all areas of your business, including booking generation, marketing, revenue management and much more.

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